Arild Andersen himself, the bassist with the warm tone, can truly be called a legend of European jazz. His career began back in 1967, and the band with Jan Garbarek, Terje Rypdal and Jon Christensen released one of the first ECM albums, “Afric Pepperbird”. He has released 22 albums under his own name on ECM. His entire discography is a piece of living jazz history, but above all he is firmly connected to the present, and his great musical joy, groove and creativity combine with excellent technique. He is also a fantastic composer, and the repertoire of the Arild Andersen Group is mainly from his pen.
But Andersen’s accompanists are no less prestigious. Marius Neset on saxophone is a true comet and is also known as a composer, writing for major ensembles such as the London Sinfonietta and the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra. His unique playing style can quickly change from tight and rhythmically complex to soft and poetic. Helge Lien is the man at the piano. His sensitive playing has earned him international recognition. Together with Marius Neset, he recently participated in the EST Symphony Project and has released ten albums with his own trio. Finally, there is Håkon Mjåset Johansen on drums. He is known for his work with the Trondheim Jazz Orchestra and Ensemble Denada, as well as with Bugge Wesseltoft and Nils-Petter Molvær.
“Andersen continues in that European jazz tradition that he himself played a major role in shaping in the early ’70s. The playing is free without fraying; although there are no guidelines, themes develop hesitantly but aptly.” – DLF Kultur
“”Affirmation” ranks as one of the best albums to ever come out of his strings.”
“That bass! There’s only one like it in the world.” – Jazzthing
“The whole thing is very impressive, the ideas of each individual come together to form a wonderful framework, like a flying carpet that carries us far into the skies above Norway and lets us see and hear a beautiful soundscape.” – Le Soir (FRA)
“Their strong, individual voices willingly give themselves to the collaborative project and the delicate balance of give and take that characterizes this music.” – Jazzwise (UK)
“‘Affirmation’ is great art of interaction.” – Luzerner Zeitung (CH)